My buddies at Rouler Cycling in New Orleans just dropped this beaut of a cross bike, made by Seth Rosko in Brooklyn. Here’s a little background:
“When Seth Rosko and Wes McWhorter set out on their first collaborative bike design project, they wanted to create a machine that was equal parts beautiful and shreddable. Rather than opt for a elegant road bike or functional SS commuter, they went right for the throat with the Loup Garou Team CX Prototype.
What’s so “prototypical” about this bike? Well, primarily the concept. Based in New Orleans, Rouler is a relatively new cycling company. Over the last year they have focused on testing a variety of different business models and product offerings to make sure the brand is connecting deeply and relevantly with their customers and clients. The consistent thread running throughout is their commitment to design — be it great looking apparel, clever product parodies or popular event promotions.
The Loup Garou takes its name from a popular story in Louisiana folklore and marries that to the “legend of Roulandria”. It’s all realized in a murdered out 18 lb steel and carbon machine that will be tearing up the swamplocross courses of Delta States Grand Prix next CX season.:
Now, I won’t say the following tidbit of information was all that surprising to me. I’m not really a numbers person when it comes to running the site, but I do like to pay attention to what you, the readers, respond to. Not necessarily traffic, per say, or comments, or trackbacks, or whatever but when a bike gets as much love as Seth’s 650B MTB did, I take notice and as I said, I wasn’t surprised. This thing has pizzaz in a world of mediocrity.
While the serenity of a solo bike photo shoot is nice, sometimes I like to get the builder to hold their work of art and pose for a few photos. Case in point: Seth and his Rosko 650B MTB! Check out more in the Gallery!
Tools of the trade:
Mamiya 7ii / 80mm / expired Kodak Portra 400
A visit to New York wouldn’t be complete without me bugging Seth Rosko for at least an afternoon. In the past, I’ve tried to document his workspace but have never been 100% satisfied with the outcome, until this visit. The thing about Seth’s workshop is that it’s most likely smaller than your bedroom…
His shop measures roughly a four meter cube, barely big enough for two grown men to move about, much less a Bridgeport, jigs, tubes, component boxes and bikes. Every time I come back to see Seth, the shop is more dialed in and this time, I am confident with the documentation.
Seth’s been working a lot of keeping up with his grassroots racing support. A lot of up and coming racers in NYC are riding his steel bikes and that’s something he’s very passionate about. Cross, MTB, road, it doesn’t matter. If you pedal it fast in circles, he can build it.
Check out a few photos from my Shop Visit to Rosko Cycles in the Gallery!
The problem with going to New York City is that I spend more time photographing bikes, then I do actually riding them. Which, in this most recent trip, wasn’t as much as I’d like. Being behind a lens, staring down a unique beaut like this does have its merits. Especially when you’re so familiar with its builder and owner.
Seth Rosko was one of the first builders in Brooklyn that I spent a good amount of time profiling years back. We first met at Brooklyn Machine Works, where he was a designer and fabricator. He and Joe worked extensively on the Gangsta track back in the day, before setting out on his own.
Rosko builds unique, yet utilitarian, yet lightweight bicycles made for racing. Each year, more and more fledgling racers find themselves on a Rosko and that means that Seth has less and less time to work on his own bikes. Case in point: this 650B single speed MTB. It took Seth years to finish this bike but he managed to complete it in time for this year’s season.
Using the ultralight True Temper Supertherm tubing, Black Cat dropouts and Stan’s tubeless wheels, this thing is light. It comes in at 20 lbs with XT pedals.
Anytime a builder gets to ride, it’s a beautiful thing but anytime a builder gets to race one of their own bikes, it’s pretty fucking rad. Seth Rosko raced Single Speed-A-Palooza last weekend and NYC-area photographer GT Luke caught him ripping up his SS 650b rigid MTB.
Ok, ok. I’m playing hookie right now from the interwebs and am probably staring down the rear brake yolk on this beaut, ripping through the limestone and singletrack of Austin. There’s something to be said about a bike that’s usually seen from the rear during a race, which is what a lot of Wilis‘ race companions had the pleasure of admiring. Cross bikes aren’t meant to be dainty, precious objects that you wipe down every day. They’re meant to be dirty, muddy and fast.
Wilis showed up to Austin with his Rosko cross bike and it was too clean to shoot photos. We’ve been riding a lot, #corndogging and just having a blast hitting the local trails and hills. After a couple days of that, his bike looked good and happy, i.e. primed to shoot photos. I love Seth Rosko’s work and was very pumped on his grassroots support for King Kog during this year’s cross season. The team did well and the bikes did exceptionally well, even Wilis’ Campagnolo beast saw the podium on more than one occasion.
There’s something very metal about a black bike and this one’s got battle scars just about everywhere, save for the Cadence bar tape. Oh and the Pearl Velo bottle was my touch! We’re both fans of H.G. Wells.
Seth Rosko is much more than a frame builder to me. He’s a good friend and someone that I just enjoy being around. Seeing him build bikes is just an added bonus. Everyone claims to be a New Yorker, but Seth is one of those guys who was around when it all began. A huge advocate in the local skate scene and ex-Brooklyn Machine Works builder, he’s seen the cycling scene in NYC change over the years.
For the past few months, he’s been pushing grassroots racing in NYC. Building road and cross racing frames for fledgling teams and local racers. Most notably, the King Kog cross bikes, a bike for Matthew of Cicli Devotion and a few other road bikes for some local female racers.
During my short stay in NYC, I swung by Rosko Cycles to see how Seth makes use of his small, cramped work space in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
When two local brands come together for the good of grassroots racin’, It’s a wonderful thing. Take this project for example. Cicli Devotion and Seth Rosko. Two familiar names here on the site and two of my good friends in Brooklyn. While the official framebuilder sponsor is Rick Jones, Matthew had already commissioned Seth to build his and the outcome is damn classy. Nice looking Horse Cycles paint too! Many thanks to Alan for the photos and Matthew for sending these over. Check out more below!
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Prolly is not Probably started in 2006 in Brooklyn, New York. For over 6 years it has thrived as John Watson, the sole author, documents multiple facets of cycling. With the boom of urban cycling, Prolly is Not Probably has grown to be the number one blog for the culture surrounding it. In recent years, a large push for original content has spawned a steady flow of photosets, profiles and portraits.
Known for his A Day in 10 Photos, Merckx Mondays, Recent Roll, Shop Visits, and Beautiful Bicycles features, John continues to document bicycles of all kinds and his daily life through photos. Over the years, Prolly is Not Probably has been cited in the New York Times, COG Magazine, Urban Velo and other notable publications. In March of 2011, John moved to Austin, Texas where he continues to cover a cross section of cultural influences.